Urban schools first and allow in both languages
Published on: Sunday, February 09, 2020
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THE announcement that PPSMI (the teaching of Maths and Science in English) will be introduced in government schools may be welcomed by some Malaysians, while others may strongly feel that Mathematics and Science must be taught in their native language.

Yet, for a small number of Malaysians it does not matter if these subjects are taught in either English or Malay. To the straight thinker it does not matter in what language someone learns how to fix a leaking brake hose or fill a cavity as long as he does the job well.

Many successful doctors, engineers and other professionals may have studied Mathematics and Science in Bahasa Malaysia when they were in primary schools but they learned to adapt to the mediums of instruction used in universities. To them, language becomes secondary to knowledge.

The government needs to think carefully when making a drastic change such as introducing PPSMI in all schools.

It is unthinkable to expect a teacher accustomed to teaching in Bahasa Malaysia to teach Mathematics and Science in English in a primary school located in a small town or village where the students are almost 100pc Malay.

PPSMI can be introduced in urban schools where students and teachers speak English without difficulty.

Public examinations should be set in dual languages so that students can choose to answer in either language. It is not fair or even practical to implement PPSMI in all schools as a blanket measure.


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